Celebrating the life of workers’ attorney Charles Verne Marshall, who won legendary asbestos case against Owens-Corning

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Legendary asbestos attorney Charles Verne Marshall, who in 1995 won what at the time was one of the largest verdicts in an individual asbestos case, passed away on Nov. 13, 2018. He was 70.

The attorneys of the O’Brien Law Firm are planning a Celebration of Life event for their friend and mentor in the coming weeks.

Born in Topeka, Kansas on Aug. 23, 1948, Charlie received a Bachelor of Science degree in business administration from the University of Kansas in 1971 and worked selling early computers in the Kansas City and Chillicothe Missouri region. Before attending law school he was an entrepreneur, a farm real estate broker and appraiser and manager of a cow/calf operation. 

Charlie and his wife, Patty, married in 1981 in Chillicothe and attended Washington University School of Law together in St. Louis from 1983-86. He was a member of both the Missouri and Illinois Bars and practiced law in both states.

Charlie began his work representing workers harmed by exposure to asbestos containing products at the Lakin and Herndon law firm in Wood River, IL, where he took the case load from a few hundred to a couple of thousand asbestos cases. He started his own law office around 1994 and eventually shared an office with Jim Hallorran and Andrew O’Brien.

In February 1995, Charlie and his co-counsel Paul Hulsey, of Ness Motley, won of the largest verdicts at that time in an individual asbestos case in Hefner vs Owens-Corning.

Charlie was a favorite of several St. Louis area unions for his dedication to their members and philanthropy to their causes.

Charlie and Patty retired in 2005, splitting their time between the desert in Scottsdale, Arizona and the mountains in Fraser, Colorado.

Charlie was passionate about his family, his clients and his life. He was an avid golfer for many years before retiring and took up skiing, mountain biking, hiking (including at least two dozen 1,400-foot-peaks) and walking with his dog.

He also enjoyed helping others by volunteering.

Charlie is survived by his wife, Patty, brother Bill, three children, Steve, Ben and Nicole, and two grandchildren, Harrison and Eliana.

O’Brien Law Firm will be sending formal invitations for the Celebration of Life event.

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